Contractor Bechtel has joined with space miner Planetary Resources to mine near earth asteroids.
The move makes Planetary Resources' goal more tangible as a company with expertise in mining and engineering joins the fray.
Planetary Resources launched last year, and is backed by a range of massive conglomerates such as Google and has also partnered with fellow space focused company Virgin Galactic.
Now it has partnered with Bechtel, which is joining the miner's core group of investors.
“As we pursue our vision to expand the resource base beyond Earth; we’re extremely excited to announce this partnership with Bechtel. They are a world leader in the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) industry,” said Peter H. Diamandis, the co-founder and co-chairman of Planetary Resources.
“Bechtel has a history of consistently tackling the most challenging projects, beginning with the construction of the Hoover Dam more than 75 years ago.”
Head of Bechtel, Riley Bechtel, added that “Planetary Resources’ mission is ambitious, but they’ve assembled a world-class team to succeed".
“Our companies share a common vision to continually innovate and push boundaries, all aimed at contributing to a better quality of life. We look forward to joining the Planetary Resources’ team.”
Planetary Resources main competitor is Deep Space Industries, which earlier this year announced that it will create "the world’s first fleet of commercial asteroid-prospecting spacecraft," as well as develop a "breakthrough process for manufacturing in space".
Mining near earth asteroids has taken off in recent years, as we come to understand more about the potential minerals locked within asteroids.